Joyce Fisher, Food Service Director, Bowling Green R-1 School District
It is hard to believe we are in the last few days of the 2013-14 school year! Congrat-ulations to the graduating seniors! I have enjoyed talking with this great group of young adults over the past four years and wish them all the best!
I also want to share this quote from Mark Twain, which I believe applies to us all…
“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing you can do is keep your mind young.”
The Bowling Green R-1 School District Food Service will be sponsoring the Summer Food Service Program again this year. This program, administered by the Department of Health and Senior Services, allows us to provide free breakfast and lunch. The program will run with Summer School-June 2 through 27.
Bowling Green Elementary location is an open site. This means anyone 18 years of age and under may receive a free breakfast and lunch. Breakfast will be served Monday thru Friday, 7:45 to 8:10 a.m. Lunch will be served 11 to noon. Anyone 18 years of age and under are welcome to come to the Elementary commons area and receive a free meal any or all days of operation.
Frankford Ele-mentary is an enrolled site. This will allow free meals only for those attending the summer school program.
Looking ahead to the upcoming year…New vending guidelines for schools become effective July 1. Also, several new changes to breakfast and lunch guidelines are proposed. The School Nutrition Association is attempting to seek a halt on some of these changes as indicated below:
The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA) of 2010 and subsequent regulations made a number of significant changes to the programs intended to improve the health of school children. However, following partial implementation of the HHFKA and the regulations, program costs soared, administrative burdens increased, and student participation in the school lunch program declined by more than one million meals per day. Given today’s financially challenging environment, access to child nutrition programs remains a high priority for America’s families.
As we move towards Child Nutrition Reauthorization 2015, SNA remains committed to the core principles of: promoting a healthy school environment for children; providing reasonable flexibility in the operation of school meal programs; maximizing program efficiency; and ensuring overall sustainability of child nutrition programs.
Considering these core principles, the School Nutrition Association advocates for the following actions:
Meal Pattern Flexibility
Retain the initial requirement that 50 percent of grains offered through school lunch and breakfast programs be whole grain rich. This action would ease declines in participation and provide reasonable flexibility. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans allows for the consumption of some refined grains.
Suspend the implementation of sodium Target 2 pending the availability of scientific research that supports the reduction in daily sodium intake for children. The Institute of Medicine (IOM)’s “School Meals: Building Blocks for Healthy Children” report, commissioned by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), recommended assessing the progress and effects of sodium reductions on student participation rates, food cost, safety, and food service operations.
Remove the requirement that all students must select a half cup serving of a fruit or vegetable as part of a reimbursable breakfast and/or lunch. This requirement has led to increased program costs, plate waste, and a decline in student participation.
Reopen and extend the comment period on the “Smart Snacks in School” Interim Final Rule until July 2015. Extending the comment period would allow stakeholders at all levels (national, state, and local) to collect data to assess the impact of the rule during the first year of implementation and provide the USDA the opportunity to make reasonable, responsible, evidence-based adjustments to the final rule.
Have a happy, healthy summer!